When I was studying Biblical wisdom literature (Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs) last semester, we started talking about how to interpret the poetry of wisdom literature. One of our professors mentioned that many medieval theologians viewed the world as full of metaphors for God and His character and so they found the poetic style of David and Solomon very natural. Though these medieval theologians viewed the world as corrupted by sin, they strongly believed that if we learn to look closely at the world, we can see glimpses of God. Even the tree growing right outside my window can teach me something about God if I take the time to notice it and think about it.
I like this idea. A lot. It is not a pantheistic claim that God is everything, but rather a healthy appreciation of God’s fingerprints on our world. After all, as Creator of the world, wouldn’t He leave His trademark on it?
Learning to think about the world this way has really deepened my appreciation for the creativity of God in that last few months. It has also helped me to think more about how I tell stories. Am I picking up on the God-given metaphors around me? How I can use those metaphors to tell better stories?
I am trying to learn to see the world that way.